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  New Site Format
 
   As you know
  StampedeProject has
  become way more than
  just Stampede, Traxxas,
  to now include other
  RC brands, accessories,
  and cars. I still don't sell
  anything, I just
  enthusiastically promote
  those RC products I think
  are great.
 
   Take a look through
  the above li
nks.
  I simply had too much
  information for my
  old site format.
  More fun projects
  coming...
  - Tony



  StampedeProject.com

  Please Private Message
  me Here on the
  Traxxas Forum
    

  Copyright 2007
  all rights reserved 


 


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Fast Lane Machine Rustler Kit – Ultimate Rustler
By Tony Arnold - StampedeProject.com

Over a year ago, we showed off FLM’s drool-able Extended Stampede Kit which generated tons of ohhs and ahhs. This month we are again going to blow your mind with the stunning FLM Rustler kit loaded with upgrades and tweaked by yours truly.

Shiny & Tough
For bashing, you gotta have a Rustler, but ever wish you could actually tune it? FLM’s Rustler parts provide tons of tuning options including regular or extended chassis options, “evened” stock or extended stock arms, multi-point camber & shock mounts, rear toe in options, and even CVD drive shafts.  A tunable Rustler made of solid super durable billet aluminum – this definitely isn’t a beginners RC any more.

No cheap materials here.  Every FLM part is CNC machined from hardened 6061 T-6 aluminum and meant to be flogged. FLM states they are making parts for drivers, not for show.  Each part is backed with a lifetime replacement warranty. With a warranted, all billet aluminum chassis the FLM Rustler becomes the launch pad for truly stupid antics.

 

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New Parts
Some of FLM’s parts are not new, however this kit shows new Steering Bell Crank, Steering Drag Link, CVD drive shafts, Front C-Hubs, Rear Bearing Carriers, and Upper Deck.  FLM’s part options are plentiful. We choose the 4-degree toe-in rear arm mount option and the 1” extended Slash length chassis.  We picked standard extended “evened” arms that rid ourselves of the goofy Traxxas wheel offset and allow direct front-to-rear tire rotation of standard 12mm hexed wheels. The result when paired with all the other FLM Rustler/Stampede parts is a near 100% FLM Rustler chassis ready to receive stock transmission internals and electrics. A couple new tweaks to the kit were minor fitment improvements and thicker 1/8” Camber Link Rods tip-able with even stronger Maxx or Jato captured link ends – completely bulletproof.

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<IMG8.JPG>[CAPTION – Pro-Line’s Body Clips made swapping packs painless.]

The Build
Bolting together the FLM chassis is as familiar as stock, but requires a big tube of thread lock.  I transfered the stock Rustler VXL transmission internals into the beautiful billet FLM transmission housing.  The included steel FLM links were outstanding, however it’s hard to do a red, white, and blue Rustler with no blue on the chassis so Traxxas Links were used. The new FLM links will find a home on my FLM Stampede.

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<IMG9.JPG>[CAPTION – FLM’s new Emaxx strength Black Links should be virtually indestructible.]

The stock 2055 steering servo pictured was upgraded to a torquey HiTec 645MG with a heavy duty servo saver. Other upgrades were a full set of Boca Plus Plus Ceramic bearings for the ultimate spin. Since FLM has a billet 5x11 rear bearing carriers all I needed were some front RPM 5x11 bearing carriers to mount Pro Line 30 Series wheel and bowties. As with the FLM Stampede, one omission in the FLM parts list is a front body mount however the stock plastic mount is preferred for a little flex to prevent body damage to the Pro Line Crowd Pleaser body.  The stock shocks fit perfectly, however I can’t leave anything alone so I went big bore with huge Revo shocks filled with lighter weight oil… just the right feel for bashing.  Now of course building the ultimate Rustler wouldn’t be complete without a warp speed brushless system. My choice was Tekin’s new R1-Pro ESC powered brushless system with a Redline 537 3700KV motor and dual 6.6V A123 packs.  Last but not least was to upgrade the RX/TX to a Spectrum unit for worry free bashing on this 60+ MPH red, white and blue basher.

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<IMG10.JPG>[CAPTION – The Tekin brushless system and A123 packs kicked out car flipping power.]

--------Call Out-------------

FLM Parts Used - $367
Aluminum Tranny Case & 4 Degree Rear Blocks

Extended Rustler Chassis
w/ Bumper, Rear Braces, & Battery Ties
Upper Chassis
Front & Rear Shock Towers

Caster Blocks
Electric Arm Conversion Kit
Adjustable Front Bulkhead
Steering Bell Crank
Drag Link
CVD Kit
Rear Bearing Carriers
All hardware included with parts

Additional Parts Used $1000
Boca Ceramic 5x11 bearings
Tekin R1-Pro ESC/Motor system
A123 6.6V Packs
Revo Shocks 
Spectrum RX/TX
HiTec 645MG Servo
Pro Line 60 Series Tires & Wheels
Pro Line Crowd Pleaser Body
Pro Line Pro Body Pulls
RPM Front Bearing Carriers


Total Project Upgrades $1367
(give or take a few bucks)

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Performance Testing
I’d like to say I spent long days at a well groomed track, but I didn’t, I punished the FLM Rustler in a far more brutal environment… my backyard.  My backyard and adjacent lots with a roughed out track have totaled more RCs than I care to count.  It is a landscape riddled with large petrified dog turds and everything from patches of dense grass and weeds that overheat electrics, to hidden rocks that shred parts and explode shocks, and finally the 4-10 foot dirt mounds in the adjacent lots that have served up death to almost all that get tossed in the air at high speed. The FLM Rustler survived unscathed a week-long session of nightly bashing, jumping, and what can only be termed as blatant abuse.  During high speed blitzes, the longer chassis and tuning options helped keep the Rustler under control at even top end speeds.

What We Liked
A solid aluminum show-quality chassis that performs better than it looks with adjustments that would keep a maniacal TC tuner occupied. Bulletproof parts backed by a lifetime warranty. FLM’s link design has been improved to an indestructible level with all the features of standard links. Pro level tuning capabilities paired with extended FLM chassis and “evened” arms up-sizes the RC to 1/8th scale buggy proportions.  I previously purchased stock Rustler Bell Cranks by the dozen, the FLM replacement will be the last one I ever buy.  Every part is a stock replacement swap.  The Tekin brushless system tossed the Rustler around easily and is right at home on this hot looking chassis.

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What We Would Change
The parts are 100% and functioned perfectly, however with all the extra screws included (a plus), lots of extra chassis holes and zero instructions, assembly of the rear and upper braces was a little confusing.

Conclusion
The FLM chassis represents a HUGE performance and durability increase over stock, if you actually break down and decide to get it dirty.  Whether you are looking for a show quality RC or to never have to buy another replacement part for your bashed and thrashed Rustler, the FLM kit is a deal at $367 for all the FLM parts shown.  At well over a grand, I may have gone a tad over budget on the other upgrades… errh just a little. Its worth it for this smoking hot Rustler which will cook a Jato and tough enough to survive high speed tumbles.  FLM has reengineered the Rustler into bashing perfection.

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SPECS

Vehicle: 2WD Stadium Truck
Type: 1/10th Scale Electric
Class Rivals: In all aluminum? Nothing close

DIMENSIONS

Width: 25cm
Length: 28cm wheelbase
Weight with electrics: 1695g – 3lbs, 11oz.
Ground Clearance:  19mm
Chassis:  6061 T-6 Aluminum
Drivetrain: Steel CVD
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Highs –  Will put a HUGE dent in a garage door and still be unfazed.
Lows – Instructions, limited distribution.

Final Call – Wish I would have bought one of when I entered RC.         

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Sources:  Fast Lane Machine FLM – www.FastLaneMachine.com, Tekin – www.TeamTekin.com,  A123 Racing – www.A123Racing.com, Boca Bearings – www.BocaBearings.com, HiTec – www.Hitecrcd.com, ProLine – www.Pro-LineRacing.com, Spektrum – www.SpektrumRC.com, Traxxas – www.Traxxas.com, StampedeProject.com